Our politicians take contradictory stands on different matters at different times to suit their purposes. They often talk of strengthening democracy, establishing rule of law, providing a transparent system of justice and accountability, allowing freedom of expression, protecting human rights and building institutions on merit for good governance. But all their claims defy reality on the ground. Their high-sounding pledges including those telling of their commitment to sovereignty of the country and supremacy of parliament proved hollow when their entire assembly passed a controversial resolution without any debate with regard to Swat peace deal under threat of violence. The mysterious silence of women MNAs is also questionable considering women were the worst victim of this agreement. -RAJA SHAFATULLAH, Islamabad, via e-mail, April 16.